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How to change a Premises Licence or Club Premises Certificate

Find out how you can change the opening hours, licensable activities, conditions attached to a premises licence or club premises certificate or the layout of a licensed premises.

Any premises wanting to change part of their premises licence or club premises certificate will need to submit a variation application.

A Premises Licence or Club Premises Certificate can be varied in one of two ways:

  • by way of a minor variation or
  • by a full variation

The type of application you can submit will depend upon the changes you want to make.

When can I apply for a minor variation?

For small changes that will not harm any of the following four licensing objectives:

  • the prevention of crime and disorder
  • public safety
  • prevention of a public nuisance
  • protection of children from harm

It is for the Licensing Authority to decide whether the proposed changes could harm a licensing objective and minor variations are generally seen to include:

  • small changes to the structure or layout of the premises
  • small adjustments to licensing hours
  • removing out of date, irrelevant or unenforceable conditions
  • adding conditions
  • to add certain licensable activities
  • to reduce the hours for the sale or supply of alcohol or to move the current times (without increasing them) between 7am and 11pm

The minor variation procedure cannot be used to increase the times for selling or supplying alcohol.

When should I apply for a full variation?

For any changes that are likely to harm any of the licensing objectives. Those changes that require a full variation include:

  • changes to increase the times alcohol can be sold or supplied
  • to add the sale or supply of alcohol as a new licensable activity
  • to sell alcohol between 11pm and 7am
  • large structural changes to the premises that affect the licensable activities
  • to extend the duration of a time limited premises licence

Applicants who are unsure as to the effect the proposed changes may have on the licensing objectives are advised to contact the relevant Licensing Authority or seek independent legal advice.

How do I apply for a minor variation?

Complete a minor variation form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window) and send it to the relevant Licensing Authority accompanied by:

The Licensing Authority will then forward your application to the relevant Responsible Authorities.

How long will my minor variation take?

A maximum of 15 working days, as Responsible Authorities and any other person have 10 working days to hand in a written representation about the application. The Licensing Authority will consider any relevant representations when deciding whether or not the minor variation should be allowed. If the application is refused there is no right to a hearing.

Any application that has been refused may be resubmitted as a full variation.

How do I apply for a full variation?

For a premises licence complete the variation form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window). Anyone wanting to vary a club premises certificate should complete the Club Variation Form  form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window).

Applications need to be sent it to the relevant Licensing Authority accompanied by:

Copies of your application will need to be sent to the relevant Responsible Authorities. The contact details and Responsible Authorities for each Licensing Authority can be downloaded:

How long will my variation take?

The application will take a minimum of 28 days to process as this is the amount of time the Responsible Authorities and any other person have to make a written representation about the application. The application could take considerably longer if comments are received as it may be necessary to organise a Licensing Sub-Committee to hear your application. Applicants are therefore advised to allow plenty of time for the variation process to be completed.

Can I apply for a variation online?

Applications can be emailed to the relevant licensing authority with payment being made by card over the telephone, or by sending a cheque. Please note that the application is not complete and the 28 day representation period does not start until payment is received.

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Alternatively applications can be submitted via GOV.UK (opens in a new window). The Licensing Authority will notify the responsible authorities of applications received electronically.

You can apply online - to North Dorset District Council only

North Dorset: Apply online

How to apply online to North Dorset District Council (pdf, 413kb) (opens in a new window)

I have just bought a licensed premises. Can I transfer the licence?

Yes. To change the name of the premises licence holder you will need to submit a transfer form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window) the premises licence to the relevant Licensing Authority, along with the consent   form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window) of the current premises licence holder . The application costs £23 and can be emailed or sent by post to both the relevant Licensing Authority and relevant Police Department (unless submitted electronically). Alternatively applications can be submitted via gov.uk (opens in a new window) and entering the postcode of the relevant premises. You then need to select the 'how to make changes' link on the left hand side of the page. To complete the application any accompanying documents must be sent the relevant licensing authority.

The Police have 14 days to comment on the application and can object if they think the application undermines the crime and disorder licensing objective. If the Police object the application may be decided by the Licensing Sub-Committee.

By transferring the licence, the new owner will be able to carry out the same licensable activities as the previous owner. If the person named as DPS is to change, an application to vary the DPS will also need to be submitted.

The designated premises supervisor (DPS) has changed. What do I do?

You need to submit an application to vary the DPS  form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window), along with the consent form from the gov.uk site (opens in a new window) of the proposed DPS. This application costs £23 and can be emailed or sent by post to both the relevant Licensing Authority and relevant Police Department (unless submitted electronically). Alternatively, applications can be submitted via GOV.UK (opens in a new window) and entering the postcode of the relevant premises. You then need to select the 'how to make changes' link on the left hand side of the page. To complete the application any accompanying documents must be sent the relevant licensing authority.

The Police have 14 days to comment on the application and can object if they think the application undermines the crime and disorder licensing objective. If the Police object then the application may be decided by the Licensing Sub-Committee.

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